Private island, condo villas to be offered by auction in March
Remote Bahamas Properties Hotter than Hot as Island Nation Cools COVID Fears
Once known for sun, sand and sea, The Bahamas is gaining new fame for what it doesn’t have – a raging COVID pandemic.
With a veteran doctor as its prime minister, the country all but zipped the borders tight in order to protect the health of residents and contain the strain on its health care system. Since The Bahamas reported its first case one year ago, less than 2% of its citizens have reported symptoms and the death toll stands at under 180. On most days, new cases number in the single digit range with some days experiencing an enviable zero.
Though the year of restrictions has taken its toll on the local tourism-dependent economy, it is paying huge dividends in the luxury real estate market. The island nation’s COVID NOT WELCOME HERE
attitude is driving high net worth individuals to target it as the English-speaking, easy to access top slot for a remote piece of paradise to hang a hammock and a straw hat and to live as richly or as simply, as short or as long as they want.
That new flurry of interest in a country whose 700 islands dot 100,000 square miles of open ocean is also ramping up the desire to live out the modern-day Robinson Crusoe fantasy. Private islands with or without amenities are suddenly becoming as sought after as the fully furnished, bring your toothbrush and move in waterfront condo. On a smaller scale, luxuriously appointed one bedroom oceanfront villas are luring those who want all the s’s – sun, sea, sand and safety. So it’s not surprising that when the latest offerings in a scarce listing environment went up on the Concierge Auctions website, the buzz started instantly.
Those offerings include St. Andrew’s, Little Ragged Island, a 720-acre island in the southern Bahamas with two fresh water springs and some of the world’s best diving and fishing. Also up for sale – oceanfront villas in the luxurious enclave of award-winning Grand Isle Villas in Exuma in the Central Bahamas, the boating capital of the country and more recently known as home of the world-famous swimming pigs.
Located on a half mile stretch of broad powdery beach and overlooking the turquoise waters of Emerald Bay, Grand Isle consistently ranks among the top resort destinations in the Western Hemisphere. Its classic architectural style, villa privacy, fine furnishings and custom features from floor to high ceiling glass, exquisite kitchens with high-end appliances, its lifestyle with infinity pool overlooking the sea, beachside dining, spa, fitness centre, and access to 18-hole Greg Norman championship golf course that wends its way through the lushly landscaped community make it a move-in ready dream. Now, five single bedroom condos in one building are for sale through Concierge Auctions.
“There is nothing comparable to Grand isle for its magical combination of understated luxury and out island, away-from-it-all feeling,” said the seller. “Only conditions beyond our control have enticed us to sell and since that was the case, we turned to Concierge because of its unmatched database of luxury property buyers, its lightning fast, sensational marketing and its dedicated focus on getting the highest dollar for high end property.”
Concierge Auctions prides itself in only accepting listings that are of a particular quality and priced fairly for current market conditions. Of every 20 properties or estates offered to the online auction firm, Concierge turns down 18. And where once auctions were considered a last-ditch effort, today they are anything but. In fact, many in the rarified upper air of high-end markets rely on auctions to bring the most interesting, objectively-priced unique properties to market.
“The 10% of properties we do take must have that special something that makes it Concierge quality,” said Director of Business Development Danny Prell. “Only then will one of our digital marketing and sales teams begin the process of preparing for the sale, always aligning with a local agent, working the database, understanding who the offering and the price point will appeal to, qualifying them for the bidding process which requires a deposit to participate and then watching the excitement unfold online.”
Once up on the Concierge website, the sale of a property takes on a life of its own with a clock ticking and prices climbing. If a reserve has been set by the seller, it will show up on the screen.
“With the demand for private islands so great now as people seek security for themselves and their families by creating their own perfect getaway haven, we are really excited about the listing for Little
Ragged Island,” said Carly von Haven, who is handling the virtual listing along with Stuart Halbert, an award-winning top producer at Bahamas Realty. Little Ragged Island is selling without reserve.
The 730-acre island at the southern tip of The Bahamas, a fisherman’s and diver’s paradise, is believed to be the largest private island currently for sale in The Bahamas. On a recent day, we counted 15 visiting yachts anchored off its beaches and in its protected coves. The only sound was the occasional whir of a bird flapping its wings or a palm frond rustling in the breeze.
To register or follow the auction, click on www.conciergeauctions.com/auctions/st-andrews.